STATS: Is Eden Hazard finally fulfilling his full potential?

Eden Hazard Dribbling

Chelsea's Eden Hazard has been his side's key player in recent weeks and he seems to be showing what he is capable of.

Firing on all cylinders in all competitions, few could disagree that Eden Hazard has been displaying some of his best form in recent weeks.

The Belgian international, who has consistently stressed his aspiration to one day be held in the same regard as Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, is finally looking like a player who could do just that. 

Coveted by Europe's best sides before making the move to Stamford Bridge, Hazard has been a hotly contested player ever since his days as a teenager at French Ligue 1 outfit Lille. His achievements at Chelsea will only have seen his stock rise - since his arrival he has gone from strength to strength, until now he stands as, arguably, the club's most influential player. 

Hazard is renowned for his creativity in the final third - a trait that makes him one of the Premier League's most threatening forwards - but this eye for a match-winning pass is complimented by his incredible ability to unlock the opposition, weaving between the lines of even the most organised defensive set-ups.

  TeamSuccessful DribblesChances CreatedAppearances
Eden Hazard Chelsea 73 39 16

Hazard's dribbling ability is unrivaled across Europe, and already this term he has completed 73 take-ons in the Premier League and 38 in the Champions League, more than any other player on both accounts. Meanwhile, he has fashioned an impressive 39 key passes in 16 league appearances - the sixth best effort in the English top flight.

Nonetheless, until recent weeks, there has been one element of his game that critics would accuse him of lacking. Despite scoring 14 goals in 35 appearances last season, and nine in 34 the year before, Hazard has seemingly always fallen under the category of players failing to score enough goals.

This feeling continued throughout the first weeks of the current campaign. With Diego Costa carrying the goal-scoring burden for Jose Mourinho's side, few were expecting Hazard to perform miracles in the league leaders' opening games.

  GoalsConversion Rate (%)Appearances
Diego Costa 12 29 13
Eden Hazard 6 18 16
Didier Drogba 3 21 13
Oscar 3 8 14
Branislav Ivanovic 2 11 16

However, with the Spanish hit man struggling to locate the back of the net in recent matches, Chelsea's No 10 has stepped up with supreme confidence. The Belgian youngster has started finding the target on a far more regular basis, and consequently, his last four appearances have seen him score on three occasions, in all competitions.

At this stage of the season, Hazard is Chelsea's top scorer in Europe (2), and their second-most clinical player in the Premier League, with six strikes to his name. If the Belgian continues scoring at his current rate, he would reach a minimum of 14 league goals for the season, but based on recent form, one suspects he will far surpass this total. 

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